Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Merge Move and Super Stretchy Screaming Monkeys

Had a great Christmas day watching the NBA marathon of games, eating off and on all day, exchanging more gifts, and hanging out with family. I especially enjoyed goofing around with my three-year-old nephew. We split time racing toy cars and tossing around Amazing Super Stretchy Screaming Monkeys that release hilarious-sounding howls when they land.

Around dinner time yesterday I noticed I’d received an email from Merge Gaming regarding my request to transfer the balance from my Hero Poker account over to Carbon Poker. I’d made the request five days ago, shortly after Hero went dark and instructed its players they’d have to choose from one of three different Merge skins as a destination for their funds.

The email was entirely generic (addressed to “Valued player”). It was also a little ambiguous (and grammatically suspect) when it stated that the “Accounting Department will credit the funds to your account at anytime [sic].

” I logged in over at Carbon to find no funds had been transferred as yet, but a little scouting around on relevant forum threads suggested that if I waited a few hours the money would soon appear. Sure enough, this morning I see my balance has indeed been shipped over to Carbon, and thus I’m able once more to play.

Traffic on Merge remains meager. In fact according to the current numbers over at PokerScout, Merge has dropped well behind both Revolution Gaming (where Lock Poker now highlights a list of about 70 skins) and Bodog among other online poker choices still available to U.S. players. Over the last few months (when playing via Hero), almost anything other than no-limit hold’em has been pretty much a wasteland, with only one or two tables going here and there for my preferred stakes/games, if that.

The forum threads suggest that players are still successfully cashing out from Carbon (with a few weeks’ wait), although as always the situation appears highly tenuous. Of course, that won’t be a concern for me unless I somehow manage to run up my modest roll.

A more likely future for me on Merge will be a few more months of low-limit, break-even nickel-and-diming, probably destined to end with some sort of mildly frustrating, faint echo of Black Friday when Carbon and/or the network as a whole suddenly becomes unavailable.

In other words, I’ll just be passing a few chips back and forth with a small group of others. Pretty much the equivalent of tossing the amazing super stretchy monkeys with my nephew, really. Only I have to make my own screaming sounds.

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